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Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition

   Welcome to my forum. 

Here you will find more than 6 years of questions and my answers. It is searchable and offers a great deal of information. 

Currently, I am discontinuing new questions. This may change in the future, but in the meantime, please know that It has been a true pleasure serving you. 

Take a look at my Nutrition Library and Tips of the Month for a variety of answers on selected topics. Be sure to sign up for my monthly e-newsletter, Forage for Thought

I also have a growing number of recordings on "Teleseminars on Nutrition Topics that Concern You" as well as the new, Spotlight on Equine Nutrition Series -- printed versions of favorite teleseminars.

And finally, look for my articles in a variety of local publications and online newsletters, as well as the Horse Journal, where I am the Contributing Nutrition Editor.  


All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Re: Hoofs

Hello Betsy,

Two things come to mind... the first is too much selenium. The Staystrong contains 6.5 ppm selenium. If you feed one pound, you are giving your horse 2.9 mg of selenium each day. That's okay, but if there is selenium in any other feed (such as a commercially fortified feed that you may be using as a carrier for your supplements) or if you hay contains a fair amount, it could create a problem with hoof health. I recommend having your hay analyzed for selenium. Equi-Analytical Labs is a good choice --

Secondly is protein quality. Hoof tissue is made of protein and if the quality of protein in the diet is not high, your horse will not have enough amino acids (building blocks) to produce hoof tissue. If your horse is only getting grass hay, the protein quality is likely inadequate. Give him some alfalfa -- alfalfa is a legume and complements the protein content of the grass hay.

Be sure he has access to hay 24/7 during the cold months when pasture is not available. This will keep his digestive system sound. If his digestion suffers, so will his feet.

Keep me posted.

All the best,

Dr. Getty
Author of Feed Your Horse Like A Horse

Betsy Hansen
I have a 12 yr. old Paint gelding who has really poor hoof walls. They crack all year round. I feed him Staystrong Ration Balancer, Nutra Flax supplement and Grand Meadows Hoof Supplement in the winter and free choice grass pasture, StayStrong, Nutra Flax and the Grand Meadows Hoof Supplement in the summer. He is shod June-October and barefoot the rest of the year. Farrier work done every six weeks. His grandmother on his sires side had the same feet issues as he does. Is there anything you could recommend for him on the nutritional side?

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO